Things to do today is sponsored by the Old Royal Naval College.
What we're reading
- Right now, you can't film an advert on Tower Bridge, but times are changing — just no zipwires, please.
- Ever wondered who's living in the top floor apartments of the Shard? Well, no one, apparently.
- The British Museum plans to expand to include three new galleries.
- Could smart streets soon be the norm in London?
Things to do
GENIE-US TEA: Bakery wizards Cutter & Squidge launch a new afternoon tea today, and it's genie-themed. The Genie's Afternoon Tea consists of magic carpet cookies, hidden gem macaroons and other sweet and savoury themed treats, all served in a decadent cave setting — plus, you'll get a treasure from the Genie Cave to take home. Cutter & Squidge (Soho), £29.50/£34.50, book ahead, all day
ARCHAEOLOGY TALK: Last chance to find out more about the people and places featured in the Petrie Museum's exhibition on archaeology and the Middle East in the first world war, with lunchtime talk Different Perspectives. Petrie Museum, free, just turn up, 1.15pm-1.45pm
STREET SOIREE: Who doesn't love a summer party? In line with the theme of 'urban garden', make your own terrarium in a complimentary workshop and sample culinary delights that'll please the most ardent vegetarian and carnivorous meat eater. New Quebec Street & Seymour Place (Marylebone), free, just turn up, 5pm-10pm
MARY WOLLSTONECRAFT: The foremother of feminism, an educational pioneer and an early human rights champion, Mary Wollstonecraft's legacy has increasing resonance in these times of political turbulence. She was a traveller too — retrace her steps in this evening event. St Pancras Old Church, £10, book ahead, 6.30pm
CURIOUS KEW: A rare opportunity to experience the remarkable Georgian tales, hidden cellars and spooky attics of Kew Palace once everyone else has gone home. Normally inaccessible areas are included in the tour, as well as refreshments. Kew Palace, £15, book ahead, 6.30pm-8pm
SEA ADVENTURES: Watch adventurous souls take on the sea in three daring documentaries. Two Norwegians surf for nine months in the dark, two novices row across the Indian Ocean, and an 85-year-old granny reaps the benefits of wild swimming. Brunel Museum, £20, book ahead, 6.30pm-9pm
PLANT-BASED BEAUTY: Save time on label-scanning and reading the small print to find plant-based beauty without all the chemicals by attending this workshop with Nat from Van Zee who has spent the past five years searching for the best natural, organic and vegan beauty products. 10 Cable Street, £15, book ahead, 7pm-9pm
LADIES NIGHT: Some of the finest female comedians on the circuit, hosted by Siobhan Dodd, will be sending you into fits of laughter at this comedy night in Hammersmith. Grove Bar and Restaurant, free, book ahead, 7.30pm-9.30pm
MUSIC FESTIVAL: Norah Jones opens the Summer Series at Somerset House, a great one for festival lovers who'd rather skip the muddy fields. Surrounded by beautiful architecture, listen to a mix of international and homegrown artists until 16 July. Somerset House, from £30, book ahead, 7.30pm-10.30pm
RAUCOUS BURLESQUE: Celebrate everything you love or loathe about the USA with a blend of sexy and silly at Stars and Strippers - An All American Burlesque Revue. Expect Vegas feathers, whiskey-drinking cowgirls, and tap dancing Trumps. Underbelly Festival (Southbank), £15.50, book ahead, 9.30pm-10.30pm
Get up close to some of Europe's best artwork
There's a new way to see the exquisite baroque paintings that line the walls and ceilings of the Painted Hall at the Old Royal Naval College. Rather than admiring them from the ground, you can now ascend a 60ft high observation deck and get up-close to the artwork, exploring the mysteries and intricacies of these masterpieces.
It's all due to the fact that the Hall's 40,000sq ft of paintings are being restored in a major conservation project. On this limited edition tour you'll see the conservators at work too. The Painted Hall Ceiling Tour really is a viewing experience like no other — find out more here.
Art review: dark & deeply personal
Black assemblages made of items such as teeth, a wedding band and other personal ephemera go into these autobiographical works that look back at the artist Derek Jarman's life including his battle with HIV. These are deeply absorbing and intimate works. Derek Jarman: The Last of England at Wilkinson, 50-58 Vyner Street, E2 9DQ, free. Until 16 July ★★★☆☆ (Wednesday-Sunday) Tabish Khan
Theatre review: epic fail
Down under Waterloo station, King Kong (A Comedy) only achieves half its stated premise. Based on the plot of the grandaddy of all monster movies, we meet director Carl Denham (a raucously over-the-top Rob Crouch) as he sets off across the ocean to find the fabled ape and bring him back to New York. The set design is inventive and the puppetry scenes are inspired but the script by Daniel Clarkson (ex-CBBC presenter and co-creator of worldwide hit Potted Potter) is gobsmackingly abysmal, packed as it is with cheesy jokes, cringeworthy puns and a terrible running gag. We may finally get to see King Kong but precious little comedy materialises. King Kong (A Comedy), The Vaults, 1 Launcelot Street, South Bank, SE1 7AD, £25-£35. Until 23 July ★★☆☆☆ Franco Milazzo
Good cause for the day:
Ernest Lunch Party are bringing together some of east London's best local restaurants and social enterprises for a fun community event to raise money for food charities in the Hackney area. Purchase a dish from Kitchen Rituals, the Hackney Migrant Centre, Spitalfields Crypt Trust, Plan Zheroes and the Tuck Inn canteen, who will be present in Gillett Square, and do your part while eating something scrumptious.
Gillett Square, free, just turn up, 9 July, noon-4pm